IDF shoots Palestinian in Gaza in first fatality since war, Palestinians say
State charges border policeman with manslaughter in death of Palestinian minor
Erdan revokes resident status from man who aided terrorist in 2001 Dolphinarium attack
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Danon pushes bill to stop Israel from returning bodies of terrorists
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Rabbi Aryeh Stern – a model of humility
Assessing the GDP
Into the Fray: The Arabs’ war against the Jews and what must be done
Cinema of reconciliation
On the volcano’s edge
Knowledge, power and abuse
Q&A with a Colombian lone soldier
European Press: Dividing line
Veterans: Keeping an ear out for change
Book Review: Written from his heart
This Week in Jerusalem
Who is your God?
Grapevine: Amazing place
A voice from India
Happily Eva After: When the going gets tough...
Grapevine: Reclaiming our heritage
Upscale dining in Neveh Tzedek
Dacca fighting New Delhi’s war too
A war for the soul of Israel’s Arab community
Iran and the West – how big a gap?
Iranian nukes and 'Palestine' - mutually reinforcing perils for Israel
A song for Cheshvan: 'The Eucalyptus Grove'
הָאַרְכִיוֹן שֶל רוֹמַן וִישְנִיָאק
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Meet the Ambassador: No longer a conference diplomat
‘Post’ leads the way with new podcast
Grapevine: The highest accolade of all
The secret of Jewish survival
Frontlines Podcast: Jerusalem's 'lone wolves'
Tempête au sein de la coalition
Crise de confiance
Qui prendra la relève de Mahmoud Abbas ?
Arafat, Abbas, même combat ?
Daniel Oren, maestro d’Israël, d’Italie et d’ailleurs !
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Le pogrome de Constantine
Le pot de chocolat liégeois par qui le scandale arrive
Le dernier kibboutz
La course aux étoiles
Les mordus du français
On n’invite pas un pyromane à éteindre un incendie
Tuer l’EI dans l’œuf
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Temple Mount: Common ground between Jews and Christians
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Discover Ramla from a Christian persepective
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KKL-JNF Awards 2014 Blumberg Prize
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Nurturing the Foresters of the Future
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11.23.2014 | 1 Kislev, 5775
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Ministers and MKs urge Netanyahu to pound Hamas
Right-wing MKs call to investigate Balad party, ban it from Knesset after Qatar trip
Diplomacy & Politics
GIL HOFFMAN \
Anything but ideology?
Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman (L) and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu (R),.
At his Knesset press conference on Monday, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman did his best to paint his breakup with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu as purely ideological.He kept mentioning his differences with Netanyahu on how to handle Hamas and saying that he and the prime minister had a right to different opinions and approaches.After the press conference, the MKs closest to Liberman said that by splitting Yisrael Beytenu from the Likud, he would now have an easier time advancing his right-wing agenda.But the reporters at the press conference were unconvinced. Political? Probably. Personal? Definitely. Ideological? Doubtful.Let’s start with political.A Panels poll broadcast on the Knesset Channel on Thursday found that Likud Beytenu had fallen in support. The votes shifted to Bayit Yehudi, which would rise from 12 to 18 seats.Another poll found that, running on its own, Yisrael Beytenu would win only five seats. Liberman wants to be ready on the Right to receive the votes of right-wingers frustrated with Netanyahu, especially voters who are not Orthodox and, until Likud Beytenu officially broke up, had nowhere to go.The Likud Beytenu bond that Liberman hoped could help him become prime minister had become a political burden.By painting Netanyahu as soft on Hamas, Liberman could repent for the left-wing stances he took recently when he released a diplomatic plan calling for normalization with Arab countries and when he praised US Secretary of State John Kerry.With Liberman, personal considerations must also be taken into account.His relationship with Netanyahu has rapidly deteriorated in recent weeks. The prime minister embarrassed Liberman by endorsing President- elect Reuven Rivlin behind his back, hours after they had decided to work against him.Netanyahu used the Likud Beytenu bond, which was supposed to empower Liberman, to marginalize him while the prime minister made decisions with Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon.Then came Sunday’s cabinet meeting, when Netanyahu could not restrain himself from attacking Liberman personally in front of all the other ministers.You can kid with Liberman. He has a good sense of humor, which Netanyahu lacks. But you cannot humiliate him. Netanyahu paid the price.Let’s go back to ideology.If Liberman is right that Netanyahu is soft on Hamas, that certainly paints a picture of the prime minister that is different from the way he is portrayed in the foreign media. If the message of the foreign minister is accepted by the world, and the word hard-line stops appearing before Netanyahu’s name in the international press, perhaps the Likud Beytenu breakup will end up helping Israel’s image abroad.But that won’t happen if the foreign press is as convinced as the local media at the press conference that Liberman’s decision was anything but ideological.
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